Consumer Reports has announced that it will not recommend the Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX crossovers and the Chevrolet Tahoe SUV due to the low scores the vehicles received during testing by the magazine.
The magazine also failed to recommend the Porsche Cayenne, Infinity QX56 luxury SUV and a V-8 equipped Jeep Grand Cherokee. The magazine said that all three vehicles failed to receive its coveted “Recommended” endorsement because of a lack of adequate testing data.
The director of testing for Consumer Report’s East Haddam, Connecticut testing facilities, David Champion, said the Edge, MKX and Tahoe all exhibited “notable weaknesses” during testing. Champion said the deficiencies “forced their testing scores to fall below our standard for a recommended SUV.”
Consumer Reports also panned Ford Motor Company’s MyLincoln Touch and MyFord Touch technologies. The technologies allow drivers to operate their vehicles’ climate controls, navigation and sound systems either through voice commands or a touch screen located in the center console.
According to Ford, upwards of 80 percent of Edge buyers are opting to purchase its MyFord Touch technology and MyLincoln Touch is a standard feature on the MKX SUV.
Ford group vice president of global product development Derrick Kuzak said the Edge and MKX are the hottest selling models for their respective brands. The automaker reportedly has a 48-day supply of Edge crossover vehicles and a 41-day inventory of Lincoln MKX SUVs.
Kuzak refutes Consumer Reports’ claim that the new technologies are too distracting and complicated. He contends, “All the controls are in people’s hands and on the steering wheel, touch and voice control. Nothing could be simpler or safer.”
Kuzak also said Ford will meet with representatives from the magazine and will take their recommendations under advisement. “We respect Consumer Reports,” he said. “They’re a very respected and influential magazine and we’ll work with them to understand their feedback and work to improve it based on their feedback.”
According to Consumer Reports, it only recommends vehicles that have “at least average predicted reliability based on Consumer Reports’ Annual Auto Survey of its more than seven million print and Web subscribers” and have performed satisfactorily in both its independent tests and crash-tests conducted by the federal government, including rollover tests.
Ford Motor Company’s vice president of U.S. marketing, sales and service Ken Czubay said, “We appreciate the feedback, but we’ve got to push technology and technology and safety are calling cards for both those vehicles. We’re very proud of both those vehicles.”
General Motors Company’s Chevrolet Tahoe failed to achieve status as a recommended vehicle due to the long stopping distances and “ungainly” handling exhibited during Consumer Reports’ testing. The magazine was also critical of the quality of the Tahoe LTZ test model’s fit and finish relative to its high $57,435 sticker price.
Full test results for all vehicles tested will appear in Consumer Reports’ February issue, which went on sale on Tuesday.
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